Authorities must relinquish their broad compulsory auditing powers when engaging in an adversarial determination of penal liability or, as stated by the Supreme Court in R. v. Jarvis,  3 SCR 757  when they “cross the Rubicon”. This flows from the protection against self-incrimination enshrined under section 7 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom, a protection which, traditionally, only benefits individuals. However, according to a recent Court of Québec decision in Agence du revenu du Québec c. BT Céramiques inc., 2015 QCCQ 14534  the protection of the Rubicon is not exclusive to … Continue Reading
The highly anticipated judgment of the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) in Tervita Corporation, et al v Commissioner of Competition is finally here (leave was granted back in July 2013 and argument heard in March 2014; reported on previously here and here). Many expressed concerns about potential problems arising from the Tribunal and Federal Court of Appeal (FCA) decisions in this case, including greater complications and less predictability in merger assessment and the reach of the Bureau, regardless of the size of the merger. The SCC decision seems to have brought some clarity and addresses the central problematic aspects … Continue Reading
The Supreme Court of Canada released judgments in three cases and denied leave to appeal in one case of interest to Canadian businesses and professions.
In a trilogy of cases (Pro-Sys Consultants Ltd. v. Microsoft Corporation, 2013 SCC 57, Sun-Rype Products Limited v. Archer Daniels Midland Company, 2013 SCC 58 and Infineon Technologies AG v. Option consommateurs, 2013 SCC 59) the Supreme Court of Canada recognized the right of indirect purchasers to assert competition claims while confirming its rejection of the “passing on” defence in this context.… Continue Reading
In an important trilogy released October 31, 2013, the Supreme Court of Canada recognized the right of indirect purchasers to assert competition claims while confirming its rejection of the “passing on” defence in this context. Read more.… Continue Reading
Earlier this week, the Prime Minister surprised many Supreme Court-watchers by nominating the Honourable Marc Nadon to replace Justice Fish at the Supreme Court of Canada. Given this recent appointment, the Canadian Appeals Monitor has taken a look at Nadon J.’s jurisprudential legacy to date and identified key cases which illustrate his judicial leanings, especially as it applies to Canadian businesses and professions. The Canadian Appeals Monitor has also looked at some of the cases that Nadon has argued to get better insights into what kind of judge he is likely to be in the Supreme Court.
What happens when the parties to an arbitration agreement expressly contract out of the possibility of proceeding to a class arbitration, and this means that plaintiffs will have to incur great expense to each make proof of their claim individually, well above the amounts they may obtain as a result of their proceedings? Should a court not interfere and decide to hear the dispute because “effective vindication” could not be attained through arbitration? This was the question put to the Supreme Court of the United States in American Express Co. v. Italian Colors Restaurant (June 20, 2013). The six justices… Continue Reading
Online advertising is big business. It is estimated that $92 billion was spent worldwide last year, and forecasters expect that number to reach $143 billion by 2017. But to what extent are the distributers of online advertisements responsible for their content? That was the question considered by the Australian High Court in Google Inc v Australian Competition and Consumer Commission. In a decision that is sure to have implications in Canada, the High Court decided that Google is not relevantly different from traditional advertisement intermediaries such as newspaper publishers or broadcasters and is therefore not responsible for misleading or … Continue Reading
The Ontario Court of Appeal has released an important new judgment concerning the enforceability of restrictive covenants: Martin v. ConCreate USL Limited Partnership, 2013 ONCA 72. The decision provides guidance about when a restrictive covenant will be unenforceable owing to its duration and the scope of its prohibited activities, and suggests that a different test for unenforceability will apply where the existence of the covenant is linked to the covenantor’s interest in a limited partnership as opposed to a corporation.
The facts in Martin were as follows. The plaintiff/appellant Martin acquired minority interests in the two defendant/respondent companies … Continue Reading
The SCC recently dismissed two leave applications from important (but unrelated) decisions of the BCCA in the consumer class action realm. One decision, in a rather noteworthy step, engages in an extensive analysis of and narrows the availability of the “waiver of tort” doctrine in claims based on alleged breaches of consumer protection type legislation.
The second decision is significant from a jurisdictional point of view and also because it ties in with certain potentially pivotal cases on indirect purchasers which will be heard by the SCC later this year. It permitted a class action alleging a competitive conspiracy … Continue Reading
The Supreme Court has granted to leave to appeal in a case that has the potential to elucidate an area of tort law where confusion has reigned for far too long. In the words of the House of Lords, “the law in this area is a mess.” The subject that has engendered this confusion is the scope of the “unlawful means” element in the economic torts, and in particular, in the torts of intentional interference with economic interests and intentional interference with contractual relations.
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The Federal Court of Appeal has ruled that the “ongoing effects” of a conspiracy do not extend the applicable limitation period for the purposes of a civil action brought under section 36(1) of the Competition Act for a criminal conspiracy contrary to section 45(1). The Court of Appeal’s affirmation of the lower Court’s decision also suggests that the “ongoing damage” caused by the conspiracy does not extend the limitations period either. Instead, the limitations period starts at the latest when the plaintiff first becomes aware of the acts constituting the breach of the Act, and possibly even earlier, as … Continue Reading